Ouray County, Colorado Genealogy
Guide to Ouray County, Colorado ancestry, family history, and genealogy birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.
|Ouray County, Colorado|
Location in the state of Colorado
Location of Colorado in the U.S.
|Founded||January 18, 1877|
|Address|| Ouray County Courthouse|
541 4th St
Ouray, CO 81427
Ouray County Website
- 1 County Courthouse
- 2 Historical Facts
- 2.1 County Seat
- 2.2 Parent County
- 2.3 Neighboring Counties
- 2.4 Record Loss
- 2.5 Resources
- 2.5.1 Cemeteries
- 2.5.2 Census
- 2.5.3 Church Records
- 2.5.4 Court Records
- 2.5.5 Directories
- 2.5.6 Gazetteers
- 2.5.7 Genealogy
- 2.5.8 History
- 2.5.9 Land and Property
- 2.5.10 Maps
- 2.5.11 Military
- 2.5.12 Naturalization and Citizenship
- 2.5.13 Newspapers
- 2.5.14 Obituaries
- 2.5.15 Periodicals
- 2.5.16 Probate Records
- 2.5.17 Repositories
- 2.5.18 Taxation
- 2.5.19 Vital Records
- 2.6 Places
- 3 Web Sites
- 4 References
County Clerk has marriage and land records from 1881 County Treasurer
has birth records from 1877 and death records from 1894;
Court Clerk has divorce, probate and Court records
|Beginning dates for major county records|
For early records see Vital Statistics Registrar, Ouray. For deaths 1880-1907 see clerk and recorder's office.
- 1877 January 18 - Ouray county (original, renamed) was created from San Juan County.  This is not quite the same county as the present day county of Ouray.
- 1881 Feb 19 - OURAY county lost land to creation of DOLORES county. 
- 1883 Feb 27 - OURAY county lost land to creation of UNCOMPAHGRE County (extinct); OURAY County regained the lost portion three days later. 
- 1883 Mar 2 - OURAY County was renamed SAN MIGUEL County and UNCOMPAHGRE County (extinct) was renamed OURAY County. OURAY County in effect regained the area it lost three days earlier to the creation of UNCOMPAHGRE County and lost all the territory that became SAN MIGUEL County. 
There is no known history of courthouse disasters in this county.
|Tombstone Transcriptions Online||Tombstone Transcriptions in Print||List of Cemeteries in the county|
|Findagrave.com||Family History Library||Findagrave.com|
|See Colorado Cemeteries for more information.|
For tips on accessing Ouray County, Colorado Genealogy census records online, see: Colorado Census.
- 1860-1940 Colorado Census Records from 1860 to 1940 at FamilySearch.org — index/images
Numerous records are available at Colorado Archives. To use this link scroll down the page to where it asks for Record Type. Click there and scroll down the list to the records you want and select. The next field asks for county. Select the county you want and then click on Search. You can narrow the search by adding the additional information it asks for.
Local histories are available for Ouray County, Colorado Genealogy. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the wiki page section Colorado Local Histories.
Land and Property
Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.
See Colorado Land and Property for additional information about early Colorado land grants.
After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse, where current records are also housed.
Family Maps of Ouray County, Colorado Genealogy (land patent maps) at HistoryGeo.com ($). Free surname search.
Naturalization and Citizenship
Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Ouray County, Colorado Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:
Probate records have been kept by the county courts. Colorado probate records include bonds, affidavits, letters, claims, appraisals, fee accounts, minutes, judgments, dockets, calendars, case files, and wills. The Family History Library does not have copies of probate records from Colorado.
You may obtain copies of documents from the clerk's office in the county courthouse.
- 1875–1974 Colorado Wills and Probate Records 1875-1974 at Ancestry.com — index and images $
- 1878-1919 Colorado State Archives has put the Ouray County Probate Index for the years 1878-1919 online.
The Colorado State Archives has the following records available for Ouray County, Colorado Genealogy in this online database Archives Search. For a full list of online holdings, click here.
1880-1939 Divorce Index
1883-1900 Mine Accidents, Non - fatal
1936-1942 Civilian Conservation Corps Enrollments
1966-1968 Vietnam Deaths
1878-1919 Ouray County Probate Cases
1891-1902 Ouray County Births
Family History Centers
Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance and free access to premium genealogical websites. In addition, many centers have free how-to genealogy classes. See Family History Center for more information. Search the online FHC directory for a nearby family history center.
- Ouray Library District
320 6th Ave
Ouray, CO 81427
Oray Library Dist. website
- Ridgway Library District
Ridgway, CO 81432
Ridgway Pub. Library website
Ouray County Historical Society
420 6th Ave
Colorado tax records complement land records and can be used as supplements to censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the records. To find tax records in the FamilySearch Catalog, do a Place Search for the county.
Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. A copy or an extract of most original records can be purchased from the Vital Records Section Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment or the County Clerk's office of the county where the event occurred.
For some online statewide indexes, see the FamilySearch Historical Record Collections for Colorado.
Birth records may become public records when 100 years have elapsed after the date of birth. EXCEPTION: The birth record of any individual who is known to be currently alive will remain confidential even if they are 100 years of age or greater. 
- 1853-2006 Colorado Statewide Marriage Index, 1853-2006 at FamilySearch.org — index/images
- 1859-1900 Colorado Marriages, 1859-1900 at Ancestry.com — index $
- 1864-1995 Colorado, County Marriages, 1864-1995 at FamilySearch — index and images
- 1900-1939 Colorado, Statewide Marriage Index, 1900-1939 at Ancestry.com — index $
Death records may become public records when 75 years have elapsed after the date of death. 
- Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Ouray County, Colorado. Page 100 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
- The Red Book, American State, County, and Town Sources. Edited by Alice Eichholz. (Ancestry, Provo; 3d ed, 2004.) Colorado article by Birdie Monk Holzclaw and Marsha Hoffman Rising. page 93.
- The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
- Colo. Laws 1876, 1st sess., ch. 21, par. 385-392/pp. 207-209
- Colo. Laws 1881, 3d sess., pp. 92-96
- Colo. Laws 1883, 4th sess., pp. 139-142
- Colo. Laws 1883, 4th sess., sec. 1/p. 123
- Letter from Colorado State Registrar, Dated September 1, 2011. Policy Number 2011- 08. http://www.colorado.gov